We are in a generation where technology is evolving every day and it impacts the user expectation. It also leads to change in the way we design, build, and deploy any software application. We are currently moving towards the microservices architecture when comes to building applications. It is a driving force in modern software development.
Today monolithic applications are fewer in number as they try to encompass every feature, module, and component under a single codebase. As it hider the modern software development requirements and agility to keep up the pace with the evolving technology. The challenges are also related to the scalability of the software as you can not make changes to specific components independently. That’s why the Microservice architecture is gaining more popularity.
In this article, we are going to learn more about the landscape of microservice architecture. We are going to look into the following topics:
- What is Microservices architecture?
- Key principle of Microservices
- Benefits of Using Microservices
- Limitation of Microservices
Now, let’s get started.
It is an approach to designing and building software applications as a collection of small, independent, and loosely coupled services. In this, every service can perform different functionality. Each service can be designed, built, deployed, and scaled independently of each other.
The below diagram shows you the working architecture of microservices.
As you can see in the diagram, the communication between each component is done with API.
There are many major tech giants that use microservices to build their applications. Here are some of them:
- Amazon: They use microservices to build their services including Amazon Marketplace, Prime, and Web Services. This helps them rapidly innovate and make changes as per requirements faster.
- Netflix: It uses microservices in aspects such as streaming services, such as user recommendations, video streaming, billing, and content management.
- Paypal: It adopts microservices to enhance its payment processing, fraud detection, and user management systems.
- LinkedIn: It uses microservers to handle user connections, profile management, content delivery, and more.
- Spotify: A major audio streaming site uses microservices to deliver personalized music recommendations, playlist management, and seamless playback across devices.
Let’s learn about some of the key principles of microservices architecture. It is essential to understand those principles for perfect implementation. There are various principles among them some are:
Since microservices emphasize modularity, the Single Responsibility Principle is used to define each service as having a single, well-defined functionality. It helps promote modular design and maintains clear boundaries between services.
Each service manages its own data store. It prevents tight coupling between services. Services can have their own database or it can be shared across different databases. It is not strictly defined to use a separate database for each service. As each service manages each data store, it allows data autonomy and reduces the risk of data inconsistencies.
As the API is the core for the communication between each component in this architecture, it is believed to be designed first. Microservices emphasize the importance of developing the API first. It helps in clear communication between each component. It also helps in compatibility.
Scalability simply means the capacity of the system to handle increased workload, traffic, or data without a bottleneck in the performance. Microservices enable horizontal scaling. In horizontal Scaling, we add more machines and serve to distribute the load. Thus providing each service to be scaled independently based on demand.
This architecture preassumes that failure will occur in the system at some point. Thus it is designed to handle failure. Services can degrade without impacting the entire system.
There are various benefits that you can get by using the microservice architecture. Here are some of them:
By using microservice architecture, you will be breaking down complex codebases into smaller and manageable components. Thus each component can be handled separately with its Software development life cycle. It allows scalability as you don’t need to make changes to the entire codebase when making changes to one component. Each component can be built, designed, deployed, and scaled separately.
As each component can be built and deployed separately, we can run tests separately too. This will make the development cycles faster. It also becomes faster to provide updates to the application as you will need to make a few changes.
Mircorservice allows you to build each component separately which means you can use different programming languages, frameworks, and stacks for different services. You can use the most efficient language and tool for that particular service. Otherwise, you can have to stick to that framework and language for the whole codebase.
Due to different features being shipped through different services, you can divide the team to work on that particular service. It will give autonomy to the team and you can develop applications in parallel. This will result in faster iteration and more efficient collaboration between teams.
Using microservices architecture, we can develop our application to be more agile. Meaning that it becomes easy to make changes to the application as per the client/user requirement changes.
Everything comes with pros and cons. Microservices are no exception. Let’s look into some of them:
Since there are separate services for each functionality, it can be very complex to manage each service. This can cause problems such as inter-service communication, data inconsistency, and fault tolerance.
Building, deploying, and managing different services required sophisticated management tools. As there will be a number of services, it will increase the management cost. It can eventually lead to an increase in the operational cost of the whole project.
As there will be a database connecting to each service, it can increase the complexity of managing the database. Maintaining data integrity in a distributed environment requires careful design and implementation.
Communication between each service and database is a crucial part of the microservices. They are communicated over a network. It can cause overload in the network and eventually cause network latency. Also, as the API is the key for the communication, it should be secured. It can ensure data privacy across services.
The ever-evolving technologies have led to monolithic architecture being inadequate with the invocations. It has limitations such as scalability, agility, and flexibility. Due to this, microservices architecture is gaining popularity. It can provide a better option when comes to scalability.
As we have seen in the article, microservices architecture can improve the application by providing modularity, agility, and rapid development. It can help large applications to be better at handling each service. However, both microservices and monolithic will exist as there are also some limitations such as communication and complexity challenges in microservices.
I hope this article has helped you in learning the microservices architecture. Thanks for reading the article.